Twofoldness and Three-Layeredness in Pictorial Representation

Abstract

In this essay, I defend a Wollheimian account of a twofold picture perception. While I agree with Wollheim’s objectors that a picture involves three layers that qualify a picture in its complexity -- its vehicle, what is seen in it, and its subject --, I argue that the third layer does not involve perception, even indirectly: what is seen in a picture constrains its subject to be a subject of a certain kind, yet it does not force the latter to be pictorially perceived, not even indirectly. So, even if a picture is three-layered, pictorial experience remains a twofold experience, as Wollheim claimed. Neither the proponents of threefoldness nor Wollheim himself, however, have convincingly explained how the experience really is a perceptual experience. My Wollheimian account thus aims to reconceive the pictorial experience in properly perceptual terms.

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Alberto Voltolini
Università degli Studi di Torino

References found in this work

Perception and Its Objects.Bill Brewer - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
Seeing‐As in the Light of Vision Science.Ned Block - 2014 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 89 (1):560-572.
Categories of Art.Kendall L. Walton - 1970 - Philosophical Review 79 (3):334-367.
Perception and its Objects.Bill Brewer - 2007 - Philosophical Studies 132 (1):87-97.

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Citations of this work

Different Kinds of Fusion Experiences.Alberto Voltolini - 2020 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 11 (1):203-222.
Seeing in Mirrors.Alberto Voltolini - forthcoming - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism.
Substitution by Image: The Very Idea.Jakub Stejskal - 2019 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 77 (1):55-66.

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